In Round 1 the Blue Jays select David Cooper, 1B, California
Round 1: David Cooper, 1B, California
6'0", 200 lbs
Bats: Left; Throws Left
MLB.com: He's got legitimate power to all fields and his advanced approach at the plate helps him avoid any slumps. Somewhat limited defensively, there's no doubt a team will take him fairly early just to get that bat into its system.
ESPN.com: Cooper has been overshadowed in this draft by the better college corner infield bats, but is still a candidate to go in the first round due to his history and solid plate discipline. At the plate, Cooper has a smooth, easy swing, but opens up his front side early and really collapses his back leg on contact. He's got some raw pull power, but didn't hit for game power with wood on the Cape and projects as more of a hitter for average and doubles power with his current approach. He's a solid defensive first baseman but isn't a candidate to move to another position.
Baseball America: Cooper's hitting ability stems from strong hands and forearms and excellent hand-eye coordination more than pure bat speed, and some scouts believe he'll be more susceptible in pro ball to big velocity because of it. Others believe his smooth, pure swing will let him catch up to any fastball. He has a polished, patient approach and absolutely mashes mistakes to all parts of the park. Cooper's value is in his bat; he's a well-below-average runner who could become a real baseclogger down the line. Defensively, he flashes average ability at first, but some scouts label him disinterested at worst and below-average at best.
Scout.com: Cooper's hitting ability stems from strong hands and forearms and excellent hand-eye coordination more than pure bat speed, and some scouts believe he'll be more susceptible in pro ball to big velocity because of it. Others believe his smooth, pure swing will let him catch up to any fastball. He has a polished, patient approach and absolutely mashes mistakes to all parts of the park. Cooper's value is in his bat; he's a well-below-average runner who could become a real baseclogger down the line. Defensively, he flashes average ability at first, but some scouts label him disinterested at worst and below-average at best. Cooper's bat could take him into the first round, though an American League club would be a better fit.
Perfect Game: Cooper is an elite hitter with a smooth, easy, advanced lefthanded swing. His raw power is unmistakable, but wasn’t always evident until this year. He’s gotten much stronger and now projects power to all fields. His bat should play in the heart of any order one day. He was hitting .370 with 19 homers with a week remaining in the regular season, and his home runs were hit to all parts of the field. He has an excellent feel for hitting Cooper is pretty much limited to first base defensively because of his lack of speed and quickness, but he clearly has the bat to play the position. He’s a reliable defender there, but an above-average arm is pretty much wasted.
Brewersfan.net: Cooper has always been known for his smooth lefty swing and ability to hit for average with good bat speed and a disciplined eye. He has hit for average in two brief appearances on the Cape, and has really blossomed this spring as his power has jumped, as his overall production as him poised to be a legitimate player of the year candidate at the college level. He doesn’t have much speed, and defensively is best suited for first base although he has been some outfield in his career. He profiles well at first defensively.
MLB.com article on Cooper and thumbnails on the other draftees.
Round 2: Kenneth Wilson, CF, Sickels HS (FL)
6'0", 165 lbs
Bats: Right; Throws Right
Perfect Game: Wilson was perhaps the biggest surprise in the Florida high school ranks this spring as he went from a largely under-recognized junior to a potential top 5 round pick with a scholarship to Florida waiting for him. Wilson’s game is all about speed. He runs the 60 in the 6.4 range, is consistently 3.9-4.0 to first base and has excellent outfield range and instincts. While he doesn’t project much power right now, Wilson has a good, crisp swing and can get the ball into the gaps. Some teams think he is too far away right now with the bat to take a chance on, but others feel that his speed and athletic ability will enable him to develop quickly.
Article on Kenny Wilson and another one here.
Round 3: Andrew Liebel, RHP, Cal Long St Beach
6'1", 195 lbs
MLB.com: College seniors are always intriguing draftees, largely because they appear to be easier signs, and Liebel could be among the first to hear his name called. Long Beach State's Friday starter has competed well, averaging nearly eight innings per start, despite having just average stuff across the board. He does have a pretty good idea of how to pitch and that, along with his competitive nature, should be enough to get him drafted.
Perfect Game: Liebel was mysteriously passed over in last year’s draft, even as he went 9-3, 2.84 for Long Beach State and topped the 49ers in wins. In 101 innings, he walked only 19 while striking out 59. His best work came as a starter late in the season—too late, perhaps, for scouts to bear down on him. That oversight prompted Liebel to spend last summer working out and getting stronger. When he came out of the gates this spring throwing his fastball up to 93 mph, up 4-5 mph from 2007, and immediately grabbed the Friday job atop a talented Long Beach State rotation, Southern California area scouts immediately began second-guessing themselves how Liebel fell under their radar a year earlier. Not only did Liebel throw harder this spring, but he had excellent command of four pitches—his fastball, slider, curve and change. Liebel worked in relief his first 2-1/2 years at Long Beach State and still isn’t overly physical despite his added strength, but he has a quick, loose arm action and works easily. He pounds the strike zone with his fastball, which is normally 90-91 mph but occasionally shows plus velocity. He gets good deception on his tailing, sinking change, his equalizer pitch. Poised and relaxed, he knows how to pitch and is not afraid to go after hitters. Outside of Georgia closer Josh Fields, he may be the best college senior in the draft.
Round 4: Robert Sobolewski, 3B, U Miami
6'1", 200 lbs
Bats: Right; Throws: Right
Baseball America: Sobolewski is a draft-eligible true sophomore. He struggled last summer in the Cape Cod League, where he hit .189 with no home runs in 39 games. Drafted in the 20th round out of high school by the Astros in 2006, Sobolewski is still raw at third base and at the plate. While he has an above-average arm, he has made too many errors this season, most of them throwing errors because he has a tendency to drop down and throw across the diamond from a lower arm slot. He does have the actions and hands to be an above-average fielder if he refines his technique. At the plate, Sobolewski is strong, as he often hits cleanup for the Hurricanes, but most of his power is pull-side. As a sophomore, Sobolewski may be a tough sign, and one more year of college may be enough to make him a top prospect for next year's draft.
Perfect Game: Few Hurricanes players struck the ball with more authority during the fall than the draft-eligible sophomore, Alonso and Raben included. Sobolewski’s strength is hitting the ball the other way but he must show he can pull it to left and left-center more frequently. At this point, he doesn’t have legitimate power for a third baseman or corner player but he has gotten much stronger. Though he hit a respectable .348-8-54 as a freshman, he struggled at times—especially at making contact as he fanned 57 times. He also struggled in the field, both catching and throwing the ball. Sobolewski was a highly-regarded shortstop in high school, but no longer throws well enough or has the range to play there. He was fielding at a sub-.900 clip after making the transition to third base and soon spent the latter part of his freshman season in left field. He still seems best suited for third as he has excellent feet around the bag and his arm works best there.
Round 5: Tyler Pastronicky, SS, Pendleton School (FL)
5'11", 170 lbs
Bats: Right; Throws: Right
Perfect Game: The most interesting thing about Pastornicky as a prospect is that he’s probably perceived as a high-energy, high-performance type of player with a lot of polish to his game. That would be very true, but he’s also probably, and very unfairly, not seen as a tools type of player, being that he’s a slender 5-foot-11 and 165 pounds and doesn’t have a flashy game. But Pastornicky’s tools do stand out when you look at them; he’s a 6.58 to 6.70 runner every time out, throws 91 across the infield (arm strength that ranks him among the top 10 or so in the country among shortstops) and even throws 90-plus from the mound. His only tool that doesn’t rank as major league average or plus is his power. Pastornicky projects as a leadoff-hitting middle infielder with his instincts and feel for the game, and he has the tools to do that at the major league level. How he figures out in the draft will be interesting; his father Cliff played 10 games in the big leagues with the Kansas City Royals in 1984 and has been a Florida-based scout for that organization since 1990.
Perfect Game (2005): Pastornicky has advanced defensive tools, including outstanding arm strength and soft hands. He’s a 6.92 runner who shows bat speed and solid contact ability at the plate. He’s the son of former ML infielder and current Royals scout Cliff Pastornicky.
An article on Pastronicky being drafted.
Round 6: Marcus Brisker, CF, Winter Haven HS (FL)
6'4", 192 lbs
Bats: Right; Throws: Right
Perfect Game: Brisker is an excellent athlete who gave up basketball as a senior to concentrate on baseball. He is a plus runner with a very good first step on the bases and in the outfield. Brisker flashes plus bat speed at the plate, although he is inconsistent in his approach. But he can drive the ball hard to the alleys and projects power in the future as he learns to get his body into his swing. Brisker was a young high school senior and won’t turn 18 until late in the summer and that, coupled with his relative inexperience, makes scouts project him more than most high school outfield prospects.
Article on Brisker.
All Jay picks, including video is available at this link